I made a bit of a huge u-turn this week with regards to the process of creating the new album. It's all good though. After listening through the selection of nineteen songs that I mentioned in the last article, I kind of came to the conclusion that the songs don't gel together as one coherent album. I feel like because I enjoy a wide variety of music, I tend to enjoy composing in such a variety, from vaudeville ragtime tunes to classical music to progressive folk rock to psychedelic pop songs to jazz and blues. Upon reflection, I have found that about five or six of the songs from the nineteen are going to feature on the album. So I whittled it down to the sharp pointy stick end of an EP length release. Still, wanting to release an album and not just a five track EP, I am now back at the drawing board. The good thing is, these few songs will now help guide the style of the rest of the album, so it will hopefully sound like one complete piece of work, rather than a random mishmash of different styles. That's the idea anyway.
I spent a long time this week diving into the hundreds of demo recordings that I have made over the past few years since releasing 'Oceans in a Droplet' in 2018. I found about twenty more demos of different songs that are in a similar kind of style to the songs that are going to make the cut for the album. I worked on a few of those demos and made a few new ones, and I have actually managed to write two other songs this week that might make it onto the album. Pretty stoked about that.
I thought I'd share a little bit about my songwriting process now for those of you who might be interested. My songwriting is a very personal thing, and I compose music in solitude. This might sound depressing or anti social to some, but it is a choice I made, and one that I truly and deeply enjoy. Not much could be more enjoyable to me than sitting down with my guitar and writing songs on my own. I always feel so lucky that this is what I get to do. It's my solitary happy place.
Melodies sometimes come to me in my dreams, or while I'm walking or driving or when I'm plucking guitar strings and I'll always record my ideas into my phone as rough little demo snippets to come back to later; as per the two songs that I finished this week. However, the majority of the music composition process comes from just showing up and putting in the hours. At the moment I am songwriting every day, always after my daily morning routine of exercise, guitar and vocal practise, and sometimes in the evening time. I feel that I really need to get back to recording music too. I guess that when the rest of the songs come I'll be sure to sit down and record them properly, by swapping out the hours I am putting into songwriting for recording. For now, the focus is back on songwriting though. It is probably one of my favourite parts of the process of creating an album. Good times.
The funny thing about all this though, is that I know that noone really cares about how much work you do. People are only usually interested in the final result. So, I wonder, why am I writing this? I like to think that some of you will find this inspiring (hi there) and it might remind you of the things that you yourself want to do with your time.
Life moves too quickly and it will all be over too soon, so I guess what I'm trying to say is to do the things that you want to do now. Don't bother waiting. I'm currently of the mindset of action over procrastination, and this is coming from a procrastination master. If you yourself are a creative type, I wouldn't encourage you to try too hard. Don't get me wrong here. If you show up and be there; allow it to come. It is not about forcing it but to let it flow through you. It's this thing of not trying too hard, not not trying, but showing up and trying just the right amount. Definitely don't be a cabbage. You could maybe try and write a song using the chords from the letters of the word CABBAGED. If you're a painter you could draw a cabbage. If you're a brain surgeon, practise on a cabbage. If you're a cook, well... you get the idea. Find your happy place.
What are you going to create today?
Have fun. I'm ending this article now to go and write a new song. It probably won't be about a cabbage.